Pubdate: Mon, 30 Aug 1999
Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA)
Copyright: 1999 San Francisco Examiner


During the recent controversies over medical marijuana prosecutions in
Placer County, I have been surprised by the absence of depression from the
list of serious diseases that marijuana helps.

Several of my chiropractic patients tell me that antidepressant prescription
drugs don't work nearly as well as marijuana, but these people still try to
get by on the pharmaceuticals as much as possible because of their fear of
getting arrested in herbally obsessed Placer County. A typical comment is,
"Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft take five weeks to work and don't work very well.
Marijuana takes five minutes to work and stops depression in its tracks."

Like so many chiropractors, I'm not in favor of medicating only the few most
awful, life-threatening depressions. Chiropractors view pain, emotional or
physical, as a friend telling us what needs to be changed and motivating us
to get moving. Drugs just cover up the problem, in this case a depressing
life that needs changing.

However, for those who don't or can't take the time, get to a counselor,
spend the money, do the effort, feel the pain and change what must be
changed, or for those who have just drawn some really bad cards in life's
game of chance, depression can be a life-threatening illness. Those people
should have available the cheapest and most effective antidepressant
medication there is. For many, that is clearly marijuana. The Hindus didn't
call it "poor-man's paradise" for nothing.

H. Gordon Ainsleigh, Meadow Vista

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